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What did you love best about The Chemistry of Calm?
I''m not one for writing reviews, but if this helps so much as one person half as much as it's helped me it will be worth it.
I absolutely LOVE this book. With one MAJOR exception.The diet.
I was on a "healthy" high carbohydrate diet for years leading to the culmination of general anxiety and panic disorder.
I followed a strict "healthy" diet similar to this book...centered on whole grains, legumes and complex carbohydrates. I ate very little sugar, very low amounts of "unhealthy saturated fats" zero trans fats, and almost zero processed foods. I ate six small meals a day and exercised 4-5 days a week.
Following this ideal diet, I was gassy, carried an amount of unattractive body fat and would experience "hanger" and serious energy lulls when I would miss a meal. I stuck to this diet though because it's what many experts consider to be optimal.
I now understand that at least for me, I do not function well on a high carbohydrate diet. I had all the symptoms of leaky gut syndrome which explains that even though I ate plenty of "serotonin" producing carbs....my stomach was probably not producing serotonin.
I now understand that regardless of whether or not a carbohydrate is whole or complex, it is converted into a large amount of blood glucose and thus a large insulin spike and crash. Also, many whole grains are loaded with harsh byproducts that can destroy the gut flora leading to a host of problems.
Only when I switched to a WELL FORMULATED ketogenic diet with bouts of intermittent fasting did my anxiety finally subside.
Listen, everybody is different and I'm well aware there is no perfect diet for everyone. I happen to be carb intolerant and very sensitive to grains as are many people I know. The diet in this book is indeed a large improvement over the standard american diet. Cutting out high fructose corn syrup and eating a wide variety of colorful vegetables and cruciferous vegetables is tremendous advice
If the diet in this book does not work for you, I highly recommend looking into a WELL FORMULATED ketogenic diet. I say WELL FORMULATED specifically because keto must be done carefully. It is not so simple as cutting out all carbs and it is NOT, I repeat NOT!! a high protein diet. In fact, the protein requirements are nearly identical to this book.You must measure your blood ketones and experiment with food sensitivities such as dairy, eggs, nuts and fish.
I now experience the most energy of my life, nearly zero anxiety, and an effortlessly lean body.I NEVER experience "hanger" because my body runs on ketones produced from stored body fat instead of glucose that needs to be replenished every 2-3 hours.
Think about this for a second. In tens of thousands of years as hunter gatherers, with no agricultural technology, how on earth would we be able to eat high carbohydrate foods every 2-3 hours?
We would very likely be able to go days in between meals, and for me, I feel absolutely fantastic eating as little as once a day. There is very promising research being done on extended fasting as well.
Also, why do our bodies do everything they can to keep our blood sugar levels at roughly a teaspoon (FIVE grams)? How much damage are we doing every time we eat a high carbohydrate meal of say, ONE HUNDRED grams.... regardless of the source?
Why, since the advent of low fat high carbohydrate diets, are the diabetes, obesity, depression and anxiety epidemics getting worse?
Keto has been a miracle for me, if it can help even one of you recover from anxiety as I have it will make me a very happy man.
Besides the diet I can't recommend this book enough! Your body wants to heal and it WILL.
What other book might you compare The Chemistry of Calm to and why?
At Last A Life is the most important book I've read on recovering from anxiety disorders.
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